This opinion will be unpublished and
may not be cited except as provided by
Minn. Stat. § 480A.08, subd. 3 (1998).
STATE OF MINNESOTA
IN COURT OF APPEALS
State of Minnesota,
Nancy Ann Adams,
Hennepin County District Court
File No. 98115615
Mike Hatch, Attorney General, 525 Park Street, Suite 500, St. Paul, MN 55103; and
Amy Klobuchar, Hennepin County Attorney, Linda M. Freyer, Julius Nolen, Assistant County Attorneys, C-2000 Government Center, Minneapolis, MN 55487 (for respondent)
S. Mark Vaught, Six West Fifth Street, Suite 700, St. Paul, MN 55102-1412 (for appellant)
Considered and decided by Stoneburner, Presiding Judge, Kalitowski, Judge, and Harten, Judge.
U N P U B L I S H E D O P I N I O N
Appellant Nancy Ann Adams challenges her conviction of soliciting or inducing prostitution in violation of Minn. Stat. § 609.322, subd. 3(1) (1996), and Minn. Stat. § 609.05 (1996), contending (1) there was insufficient evidence of venue, (2) the district court abused its discretion in admitting hearsay evidence, and (3) there was insufficient evidence to support the jury’s rejection of her entrapment defense. We affirm.
D E C I S I O N
Appellant claims that there was insufficient evidence to allow the jury to convict her of a crime committed in Hennepin County. In a challenge to the sufficiency of the evidence, we limit our review to a painstaking analysis of the record to assess whether the evidence, viewed in the light most favorable to the conviction, was sufficient to permit the jurors to reach the verdict they did. State v. Webb, 440 N.W.2d 426, 430 (Minn. 1989). A reviewing court must assume “the jury believed the state’s witnesses and disbelieved any evidence to the contrary.” State v. Moore, 438 N.W.2d 101, 108 (Minn. 1989). The court will not disturb the verdict
if the jury, acting with due regard for the presumption of innocence and for the necessity of overcoming it by proof beyond a reasonable doubt, could reasonably conclude that a defendant was proven guilty of the offense charged.
State v. Alton, 432 N.W.2d 754, 756 (Minn. 1988).
Appellant was convicted of inducing or soliciting prostitution in violation of Minn. Stat. § 609.322, subd. 3(1) (1996). Venue is an element of solicitation or inducement of prostitution and must be proved beyond a reasonable doubt. 10 Minnesota Practice, CRIMJIG 12.28 (1990).
Here, the district court instructed the jury that:
The elements of this crime are, first, the defendant acted other than as a prostitute or a patron of a prostitute. Second, that Jennifer Goodmanson had reached her 18th birthday. Third, that the defendant intentionally asked or persuaded Jennifer Goodmanson to practice prostitution. And fourth, the defendant’s acts took place on or about April 21, 1998, in Hennepin County.
The record shows that on April 21, 1998, appellant and her co-defendant, Louis Young, met with undercover officers Jennifer Goodmanson and Tanya Bratlie at a restaurant in Dakota County. The meeting was arranged as a sting operation targeting an escort service associated with Young and appellant that police suspected was a prostitution business. Goodmanson and Bratlie posed as job applicants for the prostitution business and, after discussing sex acts they would perform and the corresponding fees charged by the escort service, agreed to work as prostitutes under the control of Young and appellant.
At the meeting, appellant took a call on her cellular telephone and arranged for Bratlie to meet a customer at a motel in Bloomington. At the motel, after Bratlie received an offer of money for sex from the customer, officers arrested the customer. Later, Goodmanson and Bratlie went to a Bally’s fitness center in Bloomington to deliver money to appellant and Young. According to Officer Goodmanson’s testimony, while at Bally’s, appellant told Goodmanson that she had arranged a potential customer for Goodmanson that night and gave Goodmanson a telephone number to call. We conclude that this evidence of an exchange in Hennepin County during which appellant solicited or induced Goodmanson to practice prostitution was sufficient to permit the jury to find that appellant committed the alleged criminal acts in Hennepin County.
Appellate courts largely defer to the trial court’s evidentiary rulings, which will not be overturned absent a clear abuse of discretion. State v. Kelly, 435 N.W.2d 807, 813 (Minn. 1989); see also State v. Glaze, 452 N.W.2d 655, 660-61 (Minn. 1990) (applying abuse of discretion standard to trial court’s decision on hearsay evidence). Hearsay is defined as
a statement, other than one made by the declarant while testifying at the trial or hearing, offered in evidence to prove the truth of the matter asserted.
Minn. R. Evid. 801(c).
Appellant argues that the district court committed reversible error by admitting “significant prejudicial hearsay testimony” in three instances. First, appellant claims the district court erred in allowing testimony by Officer Goodmanson about what Young said during the restaurant meeting. Appellant contends the statements were hearsay and that, because the state had not shown that Young was unavailable to testify, the statements were inadmissible. The state argues that Young’s statements were statements by a co-conspirator offered against a party and, thus, admissible non-hearsay under Minn. R. Evid. 801(d)(2)(E). We agree.
Rule 801(d)(2)(E) requires:
a showing, by a preponderance of the evidence, (i) that there was a conspiracy involving both the declarant and the party against whom the statement is offered, and (ii) that the statement was made in the course of and in furtherance of the conspiracy.
Id. If the rule applies, it is not necessary to show that the declarant is unavailable. State v. Brown, 455 N.W.2d 65, 68-69 (Minn. App. 1990), review denied (Minn. July 6, 1990). The trial court may consider the statement offered in order to determine whether a conspiracy exists for purposes of Minn. R. Evid. 801(d)(2)(E). Id. at 69.
The record indicates that Young and appellant arrived at the restaurant together and both participated in the conversation with Bratlie and Goodmanson about sex acts, fee arrangements, and employment with the escort service. While at the restaurant, Young showed Bratlie and Goodmanson employment contracts for the service, and appellant answered a phone call and made arrangements for Bratlie to meet a customer that night. Subsequently, they all left the restaurant and went to a copy shop, where appellant made copies of the contracts for Bratlie and Goodmanson while Young waited in the car. Later that night, both appellant and Young were at the prearranged meeting place when Goodmanson and Bratlie arrived to drop off the money from Bratlie’s customer. Thus, the evidence indicates that appellant and Young were involved in a conspiracy to violate prostitution laws and that Young’s statements at the restaurant were in furtherance of that conspiracy. We conclude the district court did not abuse its discretion by admitting the testimony.
Appellant’s second hearsay challenge involves the state’s question to Goodmanson concerning what Bratlie said regarding the sex acts she was willing to perform. But because the statements were not introduced to prove that Bratlie was actually willing to perform those acts, they were not “offered in evidence to prove the truth of the matter asserted.” Minn. R. Evid. 801(c). Thus, they do not meet the definition of hearsay and the district court did not abuse its discretion by allowing Goodmanson’s testimony about those statements. See United States v. Abrahamson, 568 F.2d 604, 606 (8th Cir. 1978) (holding undercover agents’ statements in recorded conversation with defendant’s co-conspirator were not hearsay where statements were offered to provide context for co-conspirator’s end of the conversation).
Appellant also challenges the state’s questioning of Goodmanson about what she heard while standing outside the door when Bratlie and her customer were in the motel room. Again, the testimony, which concerned sex acts and the price for those acts, was not offered to prove the truth of the matter asserted. Because the testimony does not meet the definition of hearsay, the district court did not err by allowing it.
Entrapment occurs when the government induces a person to commit an offense that the person otherwise had no intention of committing. State v. Johnson, 511 N.W.2d 753, 754-55 (Minn. App. 1994), review denied (Minn. Apr. 19, 1994). The elements of the entrapment defense are (1) inducement to commit the crime, and (2) lack of predisposition to commit the crime. State v. Grilli, 304 Minn. 80, 91-92, 230 N.W.2d 445, 453 (1975). Where an undercover officer “merely [provides a] defendant with an opportunity to commit the crimes,” there is no inducement. State v. Vaughn, 361 N.W.2d 54, 57 (Minn. 1985). Predisposition, for purposes of entrapment, may be shown by evidence that the defendant actively solicited the crime. Grilli, 304 Minn. at 89, 230 N.W.2d at 452; see also State v. Olkon, 299 N.W.2d 89, 107, 108 (Minn. 1980) (stating evidence must show state did something in nature of badgering, persuading, or pressuring defendant into commission of crime and that predisposition may be proved by evidence that defendant readily responded to state’s solicitation).
Appellant claims the evidence was not sufficient to allow the jury to conclude that appellant was not entrapped because the state (1) induced appellant to commit the crime by initiating the restaurant meeting, and (2) failed to offer any evidence that appellant was predisposed to commit the crime. We disagree.
Testimony at trial indicated that the escort service was a prostitution business with which appellant was associated and that appellant actively participated in an apparent opportunity to add to the business’s roster of prostitutes. There was no evidence that the state put any pressure on appellant to commit the crime. Rather, the evidence shows that appellant readily responded to the opportunity by, among other things, going across the street to make copies of the employment contracts and by making plans for first Bratlie, and then Goodmanson, to meet with customers that night. We conclude the evidence was sufficient to permit the jury to reject appellant’s entrapment defense.